Do you remember when Brittany Spears debuted her "manny?" Gwyneth Paltrow, Madonna, and Kurt Cobain also had or have mannies. A manny is a male nanny. Since then, there has been a significant rise in mannies. They've always been around, think Mr. Belvedere and Charles in Charge.
Ingrid Kelleghen, founder and CEO of Cambridge Nanny Group in Chicago, has seen "a bit of a spike in male applicants recently. We're meeting men with experience in education, social work and coaching sports, or who have college degrees. They are unable to find jobs in their respective fields, so they come to us."
She added that many families are searching specifically for mannies. These requests come from single moms, lesbian couples, and families with boys. "They're looking for a positive male role model," she added.
Last time I asked for a babysitter, my friend told me about a high school age boy who her kids absolutely adore. I'm all for having a male sitter. I have two VERY active boys and I would rather have a boy who'll take them to the park or play in the back yard with them. I'm not saying a girl wouldn't, just that boys are more likely to do those things. Also, they have a boy to look up to.
Many parents of school age boys actually prefer men as caregivers. They typically have more energy, are more sports oriented and tend to spend more time outdoors. One manny, Jack Eichinger, says that his manny service not only offers a babysitting service but "male enrichment" in the form of a "big brother figure." His mannies bring energy and excitement to a regular night in with the babysitter - one client gushes how her "kids are obsessed" with their manny!
Would you hire a manny or male babysitter?